We do not have childhood memories.
Me and you.
We did not run bare-feet across the corn fields, chasing butterflies. And even if we did, you would deny it, at least the butterflies part. Because you would hate to think that that admission might cost you the smile of that cute girl sitting across from us.
You did not pull my hair and put bugs down my dress as a way of showing me that you liked me. You did not pinch me and ran away, leaving me crying, but inwardly happy that its me you picked to pinch. Twisted, I know. You understand, though, don't you?
We did not sit next to each other in class and steal glances at each other books hoping to catch the answer to the question on the blackboard. We did not even sit in the same class, passing notes, making fun of the teacher, making fun of other students.
We did not walk home together, playing 'It'. Nor did we even race home, the winner gloating for hours.
Our parents did not have a hard time making us do things separately. Nor did they have to make us finish our chores first before we rushed off together to lawd knows where.
We did not fight because when we started dating, we stopped spending time together. I did not hate your new girl because she was more special than me. You did not want to slap me because I was dating an asshole you wished I would just dump.
We have no memories from before.
When I met you, something shifted. What we did not have, we somehow did. In a crazy alternate universe. Because everything felt like we'd been there before. Nothing felt foreign.
You joked with me like you'd known me since I was a cat's height. Two minutes after we met, you teased me without caring if I would take offense. I did not not. And you somehow knew I wouldn't.
We knew. We felt it. This was bound to happen. We were destined to meet. To be friends. Forever
You were lying on a hospital bed. That first day. I made fun of you. You laughed. Hard. You looked beat, yet your spirit... It was the spirit of a guy I did not grow up with, but I would definitely be having around for a long time.
We talk. Endlessly. We never run out of things to say. It's been a month. Yet, forever does not even compare.
It kills me, that sometimes I call you and despite the pain, you will pick, just to say thanks for calling, I miss you, I am too much in pain to talk. I hang up and try not to cry. Because you would mock me for crying. And I would feel bad.
And I cry. Just a little. Because my one wish, is to take that pain away. And kick it's stupid behind to the Great Wall of China. And hang it there. Naked. For all to see. Because you know you can see that wall from the moon and that means that the whole universe can laugh at it.
Then I get the text. One word.
And I smile. Because I know that despite what you are feeling, the pain you are in, you want to talk. And I can't wait to tell you useless things. And complain about the man in my life. Well, the one that used to be in my life.
You patiently listen.
Before I remember, I am going on and on about a silly non-relationship when I should be going on and on about your chemo. And you find ways to change the topic again. To the fact that I 'friendzoned' you. Then I laugh and tell you for the millionth time, you cannot break up with a friend. It's the best zone. And you laugh. And I hear the pain in your laughter.
I am still planning to sneak into your hospital room and hide in the toilet. You know, as we planned. Then play monopoly or some silly game on the iPad till we bore each other to death. Though, I have a feeling you would rat me out just to watch me get in trouble.
I miss you, bad.
You see those memories we did not have up there? I plan on having them. No you cannot pull my hair, but you can help me undo braids. Yeah, that's what friends do! You cannot put bugs down my dress, but you can refuse to kill a bug just to watch me pout. And you know how I am the queen of pout.
I plan on bringing my kids over to yours to play with yours. That is me telling you to get married quickly. Which remind me, you must be the only one who gets that many women visitors. No way you have convinced the nurses they are all family.
I hate it that I can't see you. Because you.... you are my heart's sun. And it's kinda hard for me to see that sun now that you have it hidden in some room in some hospital that won't even let us in.
Time for me to call you, Bakari.
I have been here before. Writing about rain. And always, my rain goes with tears. Not today. Today it rains outside, it pours like a punishment to earth. The soil cringe and dread the next rain drop. It prays that the next one will not hurt as bad, will be a tad bit gentle. Yet, it hurts more. And as it pours, helplessly the soil is taken away, to lands unknown.
That has been my life for a while. I have not been in control of what my life has turned out to be. The raindrops have unhinged me, carried me away. Not anymore.
Today, from a coffee shop, I watch the rain. And do not identify that feeling. Instead, I see the beauty, the clearness of colours that seems to appear after the rains. The earth has been washed a new. And so has my heart. I am content.
I have made mistakes. Those that have made me question my sanity. Because I walked into them eyes wide open. Even peptalked myself as I headed deep into them. Then I cried. Then I hurt. Depressed. Stressed.
There is this praying mantis that loved hanging out at the door to my laundry room. This mantis is so huge, I was convinced it was either a drone or a Martian. Or a Martian drone. I can never bring myself to kill bugs, no matter how much I hate them. My solution has always been to pick them up with a stick or toilet paper. Throw it into the toilet, then flush. This is where you're allowed to form an opinion into the kind of mother I will make. Because I shall give birth to bugs. Moving on...
For some reason, I think that's less painful. Like, the flushing happens to fast, they have no time to contemplate whats about to happen to them. I guess that's how I'd like to die myself. I only extend that to them bugs.
Where was I?
Oh yeah, this mantis. I did not want to kill it. I took pictures of it. I posted them on Twitter. I complained about it. But every morning, I went there to look for it. There was another bug hanging around. No idea what breed that is. But it was always close to the mantis. For a week. These two bugs camped at my door. There were remnants of what looked like food. Or it could have been an accumulation of dirt. But it looked like very tiny dead leaves and ants heads etc., I chose to assume it was the food these two were eating.
One day I go downstairs to the laundry room to check on them. This is becoming an obsession. An unhealthy one. The mantis is gone. The other bug is still there. I search. Imagine walking up to me at that time and asking me what it is I am looking for. Nowhere to be seen. There are no green spiky and spindly legs remains to give an indication that Bug#2 ate the mantis. Or maybe it did, its a just a very clean eater.
I am kind of disappointed. I kinda liked the mantis.
Following day, I go to check. Bug#2 still there. Day three, bug is lying on the ground. I am not a pathologist, but I can tell when a bug is dead. And this one is pretty much so.
I choose to go with a romantic story as to why it died. It could not live without the mantis. The mantis upped and left. And instead of Bug #2 living on, going out and enjoying bug life, discovering more doors in my house, it chose to stay there. And die.
There I was. That was me. I am afraid of being alone. I either always have people around me, or the TV, or something. Anything to keep from being with myself. I am a relationship addict. I love being in love. I love having someone.
Then it hit me.
I am that bug. I will die, if I do not learn to live and be okay without the mantises in my life.